Summary: C.S. Lewis called Psalm 19 “the greatest poem in the Bible.” It speaks of God's majesty and power and tells us HOW God has shown His love for us.
OPEN: According to “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” the longest love letter ever was written by Marcel de Leclure in 1875. Marcel was an artist in Paris France and his letter contained the 3 word French phrase “je vous aime” (pronounced “shavou same”) which means “I Love You.” This wasn’t just written down once… it was written 1,875,000 times. And he didn’t EVEN write the letter. He hired a scribe. He dictated that message - word for word (all 3 of them) - and then had the scribe read it back to him (remember, this was the same phrase written 1,875,000 times).
Reflecting on this love letter, Robert Ripley (the creator of “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not”) said “Never was love made manifest by as great an expenditure of time and effort.”
(PAUSE) One person observed “That’s ridiculous. How loving is it to just write the same thing a million times?” (Joel Pankow, Sermoncentral.com)
But that’s how some people think sometimes.
By contrast – when God showed his love for David - David realized that God did far more than write down “I love you” a million times. In Psalm 19 David tells us HOW God showed His love.
David starts out telling us: “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge.” Psalm 19:1-2
David looked up at the heavens and saw God’s love filling the night sky.
ILLUS: Abraham Lincoln said: “I never behold (the stars) that I do not feel I am looking in the face of God.”
In our culture, where we spend so much time inside, we rarely get to experience the majesty of a starry heaven like David did. But – when we do – sometimes it’s overwhelming.
In one of his Psalms, David wrote: “When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?” Psalm 8:3-4
The heavens are so imposing that David wondered why God even gave him a 2nd thought. (pause) But God DID give David a 2nd thought, and David knew it. That’s why he tried so hard to be a man after God’s own heart. But, if he’d only known how much God did for us in the heavens. David would have written far more of his Psalms. Because - you see - the heavens might be pretty, but they’re more than just a pretty face.
ILLUS: Over the centuries, STARS have served as way to measure seasons (a fact taught us in the first chapter of Genesis). From the structures of the Aztecs to those of the Egyptians and perhaps even with Stonehenge – the ancients used the stars to chart the stars and determine the best times to plant and harvest their crops. Stars were also used sailors to find their way across uncharted oceans.
Many of the PLANETS (a few of which have mistaken for stars) have served as a protective shield to deflect meteors, asteroids, and other space debris from our earth.
And of course, there’s the closest star in our universe. Do you know what that closest star is? That’s right – it’s the SUN. One scientist marveled “In many ways, the sun is just an ordinary star. But in other ways, it is clear that the sun was designed for life to be possible on Earth.”
The sun’s temperature and distance from Earth is ideal for LIFE. If it were closer or hotter, LIFE would be burned away; and if it were farther away or colder than it is, last week’s cold snap would seem like summer day. Earth would just be too cold to sustain life.
In addition there are scientists out there who mock our Sun because it’s smaller and weaker than some of the more impressive stars in the universe. But those bigger and hotter stars produce huge amounts of harmful radiation. And they tend to fling devastating flares far out into their solar systems. These flares – would incinerate any life on our planet (not to mention what they’d do to our cell phone reception).
Yes, our star was DESIGNED by God to make life possible.
Back in 1968 there was an Astronaut named Bill Anders who had the privilege of flying over the earth in space. He said: “(The earth) was the only color we could see in the universe…”
So, the starry heavens are more than just another pretty face. They’re a declaration of God’s loves us and that He has made a beautiful planet for us to live on.
As Romans 1:19-20 declares “What can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.”